As she spent her childhood in the small town of Kalaheo on Kauai, Bricille Dawkins always had an interest in the medical field.
“I remember being in like second grade, third grade sitting with my dad and him teaching me about the chambers of the heart and all those kinds of things,” Dawkins said. “So, I eventually became a nurse and a massage therapist but wanted to take it a little bit further knowing with all this side effects and things of modern-day medicine.”
Dawkins graduated from Waimea High School in 1992. She learned massage therapy and finished massage school in 1995. She attended the University of Hawaii at Manoa from 1995 to 1998 and Kauai Community College from 1999 to 2001 where she earned her nursing degree.
It was in 2012 that Dawkins heard the idea of using essential oils to help others.
While she was working as a nurse on Kauai’s Westside, a friend of Dawkins approached her with the idea of using the oils in medicine. Dawkins laughed at the prospect but soon realized how crucial their use could be.
Dawkin’s daughter Torianna was born with asthma and needed constant medical care. The night Dawkins spoke with her friend, her daughter was rushed to the emergency room.
“She had a very difficult time there at the hospital and I was willing to give anything a try,” Dawkins said.
As Dawkins applied a respiratory oil known as “Breath” to her daughter, Torianna’s health greatly improved and she has remained healthy since that night three years ago.
“So that definitely attracted me to this natural alternative with essential oils,” she said.
Dawkins created “Shaka Oils” in 2012, she has been able to provide healing ointments to people across the world and has also provided care to those she loves at home.
The Garden Island: Why else did you decide to create an essential oil business?
Bricille Dawkins: Being a nurse, I got to, firsthand, witness how dependent we are on modern-day medicine. We grew up like that, right? We catch a cold, we run to the doctor. Unfortunately, our modern-day medicine is scary. I’m not against doctors or anything like that. If you think about our modern-day medicine five years ago and today, are we any much more healthier? So that is what exactly has attracted me to essential oils as a natural alternative.
TGI: Do you have anyone who inspired you to go into essential oils?
BD: My great-grandmother grew up doing laau lapaau, all natural healing with plants and herbs here and, you know, unfortunately like all her “ono” recipes, a lot of that went to the grave with her. She’s always inspired me to look at things. She would always say “these plants and herbs and fruits are there from God, obviously we should use them,” and knowing that I get to do the exact same thing she’s doing, I get to cheat, it comes readymade in a bottle but I get to do the exact same thing she did all along. She lived to be 94, living on natural medicine.
TGI: What has it been like for you, being a business owner and a mom?
BD: The business has expanded tremendously so that obviously means traveling the world and sharing all over the place and having a 7-year-old at home, it’s a little difficult, right. I wish I could bring her everywhere with me but, you know, the business is demanding as far as traveling goes and what-not and it’s been hard. There’s been times where she says that she hates my computer job. She thinks it’s all based on the computer. At the same time, I love that I get to make my own hours. If today I want to spend it all with her, I can definitely do that.
TGI: What are some of the products you offer people?
BD: First of all, it’s 100 percent pure therapeutic grade Doterra essential oils. Doterra is the only oil out there with this CPTG grade. That’s exactly what we promote and sell. We also have different products, like with pain and inflammation, very important rubs and just an all-natural alternative to everything you can think of, we have. My grandma guys, they all grew up with their Vicks bottle right? Everything going on. The biggest thing in Vicks is eucalyptus and mint and we have all of those.
TGI: How did you expand your business to places such as Japan and Jordan?
BD: I’ve been blessed. A lot of it had to do with hula connections and religious connections as well. But with hula, my kumu at that time had halaus up in Japan and he got involved with Doterra and he wanted me to go ahead and try and expand it up there.
That was a huge opportunity because once we got up there they fell in love with the product, with Doterra, and we’ve just continuously grown there, our second-largest organization is in Japan and it just kind of spread out. People knew people in China, people knew people in Singapore. Most recently, with my husband being Muslim, we got to expand over to friends all the way in Jordan. So it’s been pretty amazing.
TGI: Did you run into any struggles when you were trying to create your business?
BD: Well sure, like any other business you have to realize that more than likely you’ll be putting out more finances then you’ll be gaining, especially in the beginning of your business, but other than that it’s a matter of making sure my family all understands what our goals are with this business and everybody coming to a compromise, working out with my daughter and all those other things.
TGI: When did you get your biggest break with your essential oil business?
BD: I would say that happened within the last several months actually. I’m not about to sit here and say that Doterra is like any other network marketing. I’m not about to promise you a million dollars overnight if you choose to pursue this as a business.
But hard work and persistence definitely paid off earlier this year. I am ranked the top on the island of Kauai and I am ranked as one of the top in the entire state of Hawaii. I was recognized with Doterra. I have a magazine cover coming out. I think that was more than a gift wrapped-up present. It was amazing.”
TGI: In addition to running your business, what other passions do you have in life?
BD: Definitely hula. I’ve been dancing hula for well over 21 years now and I’m looking forward to continuing. Martial arts has been a huge thing in my family, everybody’s involved in martial arts, but I think hula is the biggest thing. And then my family, just, my family is really important.
TGI: What is the one thing you would attribute to your success?
BD: I would say just the determination of education; just wanting to teach people this alternative that they have to make sure that they know there’s another choice out there other than what we’re so used to.
TGI: What advice would you give to those who are wanting to start their own business?
BD: First of all, go ahead and do it. Understand that as in any business that you would start on your own, any self-made business, you’re going to go through some difficulties just getting things together, getting things done, but I would definitely encourage it. Make yourself your own boss.
Make sure you’ve got great support, especially coming from your family, but absolutely do it. You’ve got a local girl coming from Kalaheo, Kauai, right? No extreme college education or anything like that and I’ve been very successful and anyone can do it.
TGI: What do you hope to do with your business in the future?
BD: We just hoping to keep spreading it out. I think this, having a business partner all the way in Jordan, showed us that there are no limits to this and we’re going to keep going and I’m excited to teach everybody and anyone.